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                               Illinois Tactical Officers Association 

Illinois Tactical Officers Association Conference
                  November 21-22, 2022

The annual training conference advances the education and professionalism of law enforcement officers, particularly those in emergency response functions. The annual conference is held in November in west suburban Chicago. The first conference drew 160 officers; subsequent conferences have drawn more, with the 2021 conference attended by 450 officers throughout the United States.

Planning for this year's ITOA Annual Training Conference is nearing completion. The conference will take place on November 21-22, 2022.

Limited Registration

Remember that registration is limited; therefore, registration is accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. Registration must include your payment (check, charge card information, or department purchase order).

There will be no registrations accepted after this date and there are No Walk-Ins at the conference. A confirmation will be mailed to you upon receipt of the above. Again, register early so you won't miss this outstanding training event.

Conference Speakers 

(Times and presenters subject to change)

Monday, November 21 Presenters

Joe Goosby: SWAT Team Leader, Los Angeles Police Department

PresentationDowntown LA Hostage Rescue Incident

Joe will provide a debrief on tactics used and lessons learned in this incident. 

Joe has over 20 years of law enforcement experience with the Los Angeles Police Department, where he is a Team Leader for the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) Team.  As a member of a large metropolitan police agency, Joe has been Involved in numerous high-risk SWAT operations to include Hostage Rescue, Dynamic and High-Risk Warrant Service, and Barricaded Suspects. Prior to being assigned to SWAT, Joe held a variety of assignments to include Patrol, Special Enforcement Bureau (Gangs), Narcotics and VICE.

Joe provides training to numerous Law Enforcement Agencies throughout the United States and North America in subjects specific to Barricaded Subjects, Dynamic/Rapid Entry Search Warrants, Hostage Rescue Tactics, Multi Assault Counter Terrorism Capabilities, Crisis Negotiation Tactics and Defensive Tactics. 

Bob Keller: CEO, Gamut Resolutions

Presentation: Direct Action Missions: Mindset, Training and Motivation

Bob will discuss how motivation promotes training, training promotes proper mindset, and proper mindset promotes confidence. His training provides the tactical or practical coaching needed to survive any unanticipated or anticipated situation.

Ranger, Green Beret, Army (SMU) Special Mission Unit veteran – Bob Keller has spent his entire military career – more than 23 years – in this country’s most elite units. His combat deployments have taken him to Iraq, Afghanistan, and Syria. Few special operators have spent more time in actual combat. 

Now, as founder and CEO of Gamut Resolutions, the skills he acquired during hundreds of gunfights are much sought after by law enforcement officers, SWAT teams, corporate security personnel and civilians. Bob specializes in pistol and carbine courses where he teaches only what works – what students need to know to win a gunfight – complete mastery of the fundamentals. 

His goal is to save lives.

Tuesday, November 22 Presenters

Joe Piersante: Special Agent, US DEA (Ret.)

PresentationOvercoming Adversity

Joe provides valuable insight by sharing stories of his life experiences, setbacks, life lessons and motivates people to overcome hardships and achieve their goals. After surviving a Taliban sniper round through the frontal lobe which left him blind, Joe started on his path of recovery. He shares his secrets to overcoming the odds and adversity with his audience.

Joseph L. Piersante retired as a Special Agent for the US Drug Enforcement Administration. During his time with the DEA, Joe has been assigned to narcotics investigations, clandestine laboratory investigations, clandestine laboratory tactical school, and deployed with a DEA Foreign Advisory Support Team (FAST) assigned to a Delta Team for three tours to Afghanistan and Honduras. In addition to his community outreach responsibilities, he currently serves as an advisor to the Personnel Recovery Unit, is a defensive tactics instructor, and a competitive body builder.

Participants at his speaking engagements appreciate Joe’s unique sense of humor, positive perspective on life, and his ability to inspire others. He acknowledges that everyone faces adversity at some point in their life, and is quick to point out that it is how you rebound from these hard times that really defines you as a person and will ultimately determine your happiness.

Robert Shaw: Sniper Team Leader, Pierce County Sheriff’s Department

PresentationOperational and Personal Considerations for Winning the Whole Fight 

Robert will share his experiences as a SWAT Sniper during a deadly force encounter and what he took away from that. He will also talk about a recent deadly force encounter in which two team-mates were shot, one of them fatally. He will discuss the realities of what we in the tactical world should be preparing for, and some things to expect during the fight of your life. Robert also shares what comes after these encounters, including the mental health component of coming through stronger and finishing your career healthy.

Robert was born and raised in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. He started his law enforcement career in 2001 in the City of Rolling Meadows, spending 3 ½ years on NIPAS EST. In 2007, he moved to Western Washington and joined the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department, where he is currently a patrol sergeant in the Peninsula Detachment. Robert spent 9 years as a narcotics detective with the last four years assigned to a DEA Task Force, and has been with the department’s SWAT team for the last 10 years. The majority of his time on the team has been as a sniper, ultimately becoming the Sniper Team Leader. 

Robert has been involved in three deadly force encounters while with the Sheriff’s Department. One was as a sniper when he was forced to take a shot ending a hostage situation. The suspect held his children hostage after murdering Tacoma Police Officer Reginald “Jake” Gutierrez and was moving to get into a gun fight with the entry team. His last deadly force encounter was earlier this year during the attempted arrest of a third strike offender. That encounter left the suspect dead after two teammates were shot; one of those, Deputy Dom Calata, was fatally wounded. Robert has now taken on the role of entry team leader with what can only be described as a brand-new team.   

Adam Cooper and Joe Rhoades: Mid-South Institute of Combat Shooting

PresentationTraining Philosophies and Techniques of the Mid-South Institute

Adam and Joe will share the history of Mid-South Institute; their training philosophy, techniques, courses offered and how Mid-South provides the advance training all law enforcement officers and SWAT Teams need.

The Mid-South Institute of Combat Shooting is a world class live fire tactical maneuver and training facility in Lake Comorant, Mississippi. The facility is utilized exclusively to train Tier 1 US Military Special Operation Units and civilian law enforcement agencies in advance tactical pistol and rifle utilization, as well as high risk, critical incident response technique and tactics. The training facilities and tactical maneuver areas provide unique interactive training ranges, areas, buildings and infrastructure not available anywhere else in the United States. Mid-South Institute provides officers the opportunity to actual perform high risk, active threat, hostage rescue, combat maneuver skill sets in a live fire environment, which is as realistic as can be duplicated safety. 


Midsouth General Manager Adam Cooper is a retired United States Airforce Combat Controller with 11 overseas deployments in multiple contested theaters during the Global War on Terrorism. Joe Rhoades is a nationally recognized and sought-after Lead Firearms Instructor, who has been the cornerstone of the Advanced Tactical Pistol and Rifle Training Programs at Midsouth for over a decade.

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This is an opportunity for tactical officers to gather together to compare ideas and experiences. Through education and networking, it was hoped that high-risk operations requiring the use of a tactical team would be made safer.

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